This month’s fighting in Syria between insurgents and the Islamic State of Iraq and as-Sham has thrown much of the mainstream media into a spin.
Suddenly it’s not so easy to slap on the label “Extremists Take Over Insurgency”, given that Jabhat al-Nusra — designated a terrorist group by the US and routinely pegged as “Al Qa’eda-linked” by the press — is among the groups confronting ISIS.
What to do? Perhaps a re-packaging of headlines — on the lines of the Los Angeles Times — of “extremist Al Qa’eda” v. “more moderate Al Qa’eda”:
Does moderate Al Qa’eda mean “Al Qa’eda Lite”, maybe looking more colorful and carrying fewer weapons?
What about “Al Qa’eda 2.0” for the 21st century, where it talks tough but at the end of the day you can go out and have a drink with it (non-alcoholic, of course)?
What about “Al Qa’eda But Only on Weekends”?